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How To Eat An Elephant

By Terry Whalin @terrywhalin

How do you eat an elephant? It's an old joke but you eat an
elephant one bite at a time.  It the same way to accomplish any huge task—one
action at a time. Recently I began to write another book.  It doesn't matter
that I've done it over and over through the years. Each time it looks daunting
to write an entire book manuscript. No matter what others will tell you for
everyone getting started is hard. The writing in the middle is hard and
finishing is hard. Yes the task is difficult and looks impossible. So how do you
get it done? One bite at a time.

What is the deadline for completing your book? If you don't have
a deadline, then I suggest you set one. After you have a deadline, how many
words a day are you going to write to complete the deadline? Make sure you build
in some extra days for the unexpected (happens to everyone) but make sure you
hit your deadline.

Or maybe your goal is tied to your social media. You want to
reach a certain number of followers on Twitter or a certain number of
connections on LinkedIn. Are you actively working on these networks? Are you
posting a number of times each day? Are you connecting with new people? Without
your regular actions, then it will be hard to increase your presence and meet
your goals.

Do you want to do more speaking? Are you pitching different
conference directors and leaders? From my experience you have to be proactively
promoting your speaking skills to get more speaking meetings.

Do you want to appear on more radio shows and talk about your
latest book? There are thousands of radio stations and programs which use guests
on their program. These bookings do not happen just sitting back and waiting for
them to call. Your phone will be silent if you take this action. Instead, you
need to be actively pitching the producers of these programs.

Or maybe you want to write more magazine
or appear on more podcasts? Waiting for the phone to ring will
likely not happen. What proactive steps are you taking to either go ahead and
write the article then submit it to the publication? Or you can write a query
and send it simultaneously to different publications and get an

Many are surprised that I have written over 60 books through the
years. There are several keys in this process but one of the most important is
consistent writing.  It is a matter of writing one paragraph,
then another paragraph which becomes one page then another page. It is the same
process as eating an elephant—doing it in bite-size pieces.

Do you break your writing into smaller pieces? I'd love to have
your tips and insights in the comments below.


How do you eat an elephant? Learn the secret in this article from this prolific writer and editor. (ClickToTweet)


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